Sunday, September 18, 2005

Arbeit Macht Frei

Walking into the Auschwitz concentration camp, one is greeted by a wrought-iron sign that promises "Arbeit Macht Frei" -- "Work Makes You Free"... Unfortunately, the statement was and is a despicable lie...

Between the years 1940 through 1945, seventy-five percent of the people who were marched into Auschwitz walked beneath this sign, received a brief medical examination, and were immediately escorted to the gas chambers and crematorium where they were quickly and mercilessly disposed of by the Nazi SS. The other twenty-five percent of prisoners at the "work camp" suffered through back-breaking labor and cruel conditions in the shadow of the front gate's promise -- yet freedom stubbornly escaped their grasp. If any of the "workers" attempted escape (even successfully), death was the ten-fold consequence for anyone on whom the SS could get their hands.

Barring accident or miracle, "work" at Auschwitz made no one "free." The Nazis were evil and viscious for making such a false pledge. And the prisoners were foolish if they ever believed such a promise as "Arbeit Macht Frei."

Yet the legacy of Auschwitz and "Arbeit Macht Frei" continue to haunt us. There are still others to perpetuate such a cruel lie -- and worse, there are countless millions who are foolish enough to believe such garbage. The false promise long preceded the Second World War, and we've continued to believe the farce even into the 21st Century. The truth of the matter is that we're all prisoners in a spiritual death camp, and the vast and tragic gullibility of our society leads so many to put faith in an Auschwitz promise of "Arbeit Macht Frei."

But -- no, I will not believe it. I may sweat and toil in a miserable existence, watching my "co-laborers" drop on every side... But I know that my work will not make me free. Instead, I put my hope in a foreign liberator, who promises that "it is by grace you have been saved, through faith -- and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God -- not by works, so that no one can boast" (Ephesians 2:8-9).

Simply put, I have no other choice.


At 3:43 PM, Anonymous DA said...

Well put.

At 7:00 PM, Blogger Will said...

Sometimes I think "Arbeit Macht gl├╝cklich" is the motto of my firm and the followers of the place I live in. My hope is to be a source of light so they can know that true life holds so much more than a 50 hour work week...


Post a Comment

<< Home